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Minister of External Affairs
Government of India
Mrs. Sushma Swaraj is the Minister of External Affairs of India. She was born on 14 February 1952 in Ambala, Haryana. She has been elected seven times as a Member of Parliament and three times as a Member of the Legislative Assembly. She is an Advocate by profession and was educated at S.D.College, Ambala Cantt (Haryana) and Department of Laws, Punjab University, Chandigarh. Her alma mater Punjab University has honoured her with the degree of Doctor of Laws (Honoris causa).
Mrs. Sushma Swaraj began her political career with the Akhil Bharatiya
Vidyarthi Parishad in the 1970s. She became a member of the Haryana Legislative Assembly and a Cabinet Minister in Haryana at the age of 25 in 1977. She became the President of Janata Party in Haryana in 1979, when she was 27. She was Education Minister, Haryana in the Bharatiya Janata Partyâ€“Lok Dal coalition government during 1987â€“90.
In April 1990, Mrs. Sushma Swaraj was elected as a Member of the Rajya Sabha (Upper House of Indian Parliament) and remained there till 1996. She was elected to 11th Lok Sabha (Lower House of Indian Parliament) from South Delhi Parliamentary constituency in 1996. She became Union Cabinet Minister for Information and Broadcasting in 1996. She was re-elected to 12th Lok Sabha in 1998 from South Delhi Parliamentary constituency for a second term. Again, she was Cabinet Minister for Information and Broadcasting with additional charge of the Ministry of Telecommunications from March-October 1998.
Mrs. Sushma Swaraj resigned from the Union Cabinet to take over as the first woman Chief Minister of Delhi in October 1998. Later, she returned to national politics and was Minister for Information & Broadcasting from September 2000 - January 2003 and Minister of Health & Family Welfare and Parliamentary Affairs from January 2003 to May 2004.
She was honoured with the "Outstanding Parliamentarian Awardâ€ in 2004. She is Indiaâ€™s first woman MP honoured with this award.
Mrs. Sushma Swaraj was re-elected to the Rajya Sabha in April 2006 from Madhya Pradesh. She served as the Deputy Leader of BJP in Rajya Sabha till April 2009. She won the 2009 election to the 15th Lok Sabha from the Vidisha Lok Sabha constituency in Madhya Pradesh and became Leader of Opposition in the 15th Lok Sabha in December 2009. She retained this position till May 2014. She was re-elected to 16th Lok Sabha from Vidisha in 2014 and was sworn in as Minister of External Affairs on May 26, 2014.
Mrs. Sushma Swaraj is married to Mr. Swaraj Kaushal, a senior advocate of Supreme Court of India who served as Governor of Mizoram from 1990 to 1993. Mr. Swaraj Kaushal was also a Member of Parliament from 1998 to 2004. They have a daughter, Bansuri, who is a graduate from Oxford University and a Barrister at Law from Inner Temple.